Authex is an opinionated JWT authentication and authorization library for Elixir.
Switch branches/tags
Nothing to show
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.
Permalink
Failed to load latest commit information.
lib
test
.formatter.exs More OTP friendly Feb 25, 2018
.gitignore
.travis.yml
LICENSE Add LICENSE Nov 12, 2017
README.md
mix.exs
mix.lock

README.md

Authex

Build Status Authex Version

Authex is a simple JWT authentication and authorization library for Elixir.

Installation

The package can be installed by adding authex to your list of dependencies in mix.exs:

def deps do
  [
    {:authex, "~> 0.2.1"}
  ]
end

Documentation

See HexDocs for additional documentation.

Creating an Auth module

We can start off by creating our Auth module. This is simply a module that uses Authex.

defmodule MyApp.Auth do
  use Authex, otp_app: :my_app
end

Configuration

We will also need to configure our Auth module. At a minimum, we need to add a secret from which our tokens will be signed with. There is a convenient mix task available for this.

mix authex.gen.secret

We should now add this secret to our config. In production this should be set via an env var. There is the set_secret/1 helper function available for this task. We should call this in our application start to dynamically set the secret.

"AUTH_ENV_VAR" |> System.get_env() |> MyApp.Auth.set_secret()

Alternatively, we can simply hard code it in our config files.

config :my_app, MyApp.Auth, [
  # REQUIRED
  # The secret used to sign tokens with.
  secret: "mysecret",

  # OPTIONAL
  # A blacklist module, or false if disabled.
  blacklist: false,
  # The default algorithm used to sign tokens.
  default_alg: :hs256,
  # The default iss claim used in tokens.
  default_iss: nil,
  # The default aud claim used in tokens.
  default_aud: nil,
  # The default time to live for tokens in seconds.
  default_ttl: 3600,
  # The default module, function, and arg used to generate the jti claim.
  jti_mfa: {UUID, :uuid4, [:hex]}
]

The above config is all the defaults "out of the box".

Creating Tokens

At the heart of token creation is the Authex.Token struct. This struct is simply a wrapper around the typical JWT claims. The only additional item is the :scopes and :meta key.

We can easily create Authex.Token structs using the token/2 function.

MyApp.Auth.token(sub: 1, scopes: ["admin/read"])

The above would create an Authex.Token struct for a user with an id of 1, and with "admin/read" authorization.

Signing Tokens

Once we have a Authex.Token struct, we can sign it to create a compact token binary. This is what we will use for authentication and authorization for our API.

[sub: 1, scopes: ["admin/read"]]
|> MyApp.Auth.token()
|> MyApp.Auth.sign()

Signing Tokens with custom ttl (expiry time)

 [sub: 1, scopes: ["admin/read"]]
 |> MyApp.Auth.token(ttl: 2 * 24 * 60 * 60)
 |> MyApp.Auth.sign()

Verifying Tokens

Once we have a compact token binary, we can verify it and turn it back to an Authex.Token struct.

[sub: 1, scopes: ["admin/read"]]
|> MyApp.Auth.token()
|> MyApp.Auth.sign()
|> MyApp.Auth.verify()

Creating Tokens with Serializers

Typically, we want to be able to create tokens from another source of data. This could be something like a User struct. We also will want to take a token and turn it back into a User struct.

To do this, we will create a serializer. A serializer is simply a module that adopts the Authex.Serializer behaviour.

defmodule MyApp.TokenSerializer do
  use Authex.Serializer

  def handle_from_token(%Authex.Token{sub: sub, scopes: scopes}) do
    %MyApp.User{id: sub, scopes: scopes}
  end

  def handle_for_token(%MyApp.User{id: id, scopes: scopes}) do
    MyApp.Auth.token(sub: id, scopes: scopes)
  end
end

We will then want to define our serializer in our config.

config :my_app, MyApp.Auth, [
  # ...other config

  serializer: MyApp.TokenSerializer,
]

We can now easily create tokens and compact tokens from our User structs using the for_token/1 and for_compact_token/1 functions.

user = %MyApp.User{id: 1, scopes: []}
MyApp.Auth.for_token(user) # returns an Authex.Token struct
MyApp.Auth.for_compact_token(user) # returns a compact token

We can also turn tokens and compact tokens back into our User structs using the from_token/1 and from_compact_token/1 functions.

user = %MyApp.User{id: 1, scopes: []}

token = MyApp.Auth.for_token(user)
MyApp.Auth.from_token(token)

compact_token = MyApp.Auth.for_compact_token(user)
MyApp.Auth.from_compact_token(compact_token)

Authenticating Endpoints

We can authenticate a Phoenix controller using the Authex.AuthenticationPlug plug. This plug looks for the Authorization: Bearer mytoken header. It will then verify, and deserialize the token using our configured serializer.

We can access our current user from the conn using the current_user/1 function.

By default, if authentication fails, the plug sends the conn to the Authex.UnauthorizedPlug plug. This plug will put a 401 status into the conn with the body "Unauthorized". We can configure our own unauthorized plug by passing it as an option to the Authex.AuthenticationPlug plug or through our config.

config :my_app, MyApp.Auth, [
  # ...other config

  unauthorized: MyApp.UnauthorizedPlug
]

And we can use the plug as follows:

defmodule MyApp.Web.UserController do
  use MyApp.Web, :controller

  plug Authex.AuthenticationPlug, auth: MyApp.Auth

  def show(conn, _params) do
    with {:ok, %{id: id}} <- MyApp.Auth.current_user(conn),
         {:ok, user} <- MyApp.Users.get(id)
    do
      render(conn, "show.json", user: user)
    end
  end
end

Authorizing Endpoints

We can authorize a Phoenix controller using the Authex.AuthorizationPlug plug. This plug checks the scopes of the token and compares them to the "permits" allowed for the controller action.

Authorization works by combining the "permits" with the "type" of request that is being made.

For example, with our controller below, we are permitting "user" and "admin" access. The show action would be a GET request, and would therefore be a "read" type.

Requests are bucketed under the following types:

  • GET - read
  • HEAD - read
  • PUT - write
  • PATCH - write
  • POST - write
  • DELETE - delete

So, in order to access the show action, our token would require one of the following scopes: ["user/read", "admin/read"]. Or, the token would require ["user/write", "admin/write"] to access the update action.

By default, if authorization fails, the plug sends the conn to the Authex.ForbiddenPlug plug. This plug will put a 403 status into the conn with the body "Forbidden". We can configure our own forbidden plug by passing it as an option to the Authex.AuthorizationPlug plug or through our config.

config :my_app, MyApp.Auth, [
  # ...other config

  forbidden: MyApp.ForbiddenPlug
]
defmodule MyApp.Web.UserController do
  use MyApp.Web, :controller

  plug Authex.AuthenticationPlug, auth: MyApp.Auth
  plug Authex.AuthorizationPlug, auth: MyApp.Auth, permits: ["user", "admin"]

  def show(conn, _params) do
    with {:ok, %{id: id}} <- MyApp.Auth.current_user(conn),
         {:ok, user} <- MyApp.Users.get(id)
    do
      render(conn, "show.json", user: user)
    end
  end
end

Blacklisting Tokens

Authex includes the ability to blacklist tokens through their jti claim. The recommended way to do this is with the with Authex.Blacklist.Redis library. As you can tell by its name, it uses Redis as the blacklist storage medium. Details on setup and config are available for its repo.

To blacklist a token, simply pass an Authex.Token struct, or binary jti claim to blacklist/1. To check whether a token is blacklisted, simply call blacklisted?/1 with a token or binary jti.

token = MyApp.Auth.token()
MyApp.Auth.blacklist(token)
MyApp.Auth.blacklisted?(token)
MyApp.Auth.unblacklist(token)

By default, if we configure a blacklist via the config options, our verify/1 process will also check the blacklist. The same process is used with the Authex.AuthorizationPlug plug.

Alternatively, you can setup your own blacklist by useing the Authex.Blacklist behaviour. The module must implement handle_get/1, handle_set/1 and handle_del/1. For an example usage (but not production usable) - check out a basic example.

Banning Subjects

Info to come